It’s that time of year again! Time to start planning this year’s vacations and get-aways, that is if you haven’t done so already. I know we’ve made our travel plans for this year last fall! I don’t have to tell you that planning and booking ahead of time can save you lots of money, specially if you’re traveling with the kids. But if you’re still looking for someplace to go or just want to find out what this year’s top destinations are, read on.
I’ve spoken to travel agents and consultants from around the country to find out just where folks will be vacationing this year. I’ll share with you the top travel trends for 2017. Maybe one of them will tickle your fancy and you can start planning your dream vacation today!
Traveling doesn’t have to break the bank, and you don’t have to go very far to have a great time. The top travel trends for 2017 have something to fit almost everyone’s budget!
Big Cities are very popular destinations for families this summer and for those who are just looking for a quick weekend get-away. We have many great cities from coast to coast.
Think art, culture, history, food, and shopping! Our big cities have it all; museums, theaters, monuments, restaurants, and lots of shops and malls.
New York City is one of my favorites. Of course I grew up there, so I’m sort of partial. You can take a ferry to see the Statue of Liberty, have lunch at the South Street Seaport which offers a wonderful view of the Brooklyn Bridge, wander through the city’s art galleries, check out the Bull on Wall Street, visit a museum or two, relax in central park, dine at one of the many fine restaurants, and catch a Broadway show. And don’t forget the shopping, it’s incredible!
Boston is another favorite. This city is big on history. Walk the Freedom Trail, the 2.5 mile path through downtown Boston. It passes by 16 locations that are significant to US history. Stop at Faneuil Hall for a bite to eat, this food hall offers so many choices. Spend sometime in the Boston Common, the 50 acre urban park has lots of things to do for the whole family. Baseball fans will enjoy a trip to Fenway Park, home of the Red Sox. And don’t forget Boston has some great museums too!
Washington D.C., our nation’s capital is a must visit. Museum lovers will have a blast, you’ll find every type of museum here, the Smithsonian Castle, National Portrait Gallery, National Air & Space Museum, Natural History Museum, and many more. And best of all many of them are Free! The city is also full of historic buildings and monuments. It’s a great place to make US history come alive for the kids! And don’t forget to visit the pandas at the National Zoo!
Houston is another family favorite. My mom lives in Houston so we find ourselves there almost every year. Houston has lots of things to do. Space buffs can visit the Johnson Space Center for a tour of the facilities and view the exhibits. For some carnival fun a day at the Kemah Boardwalk is quite fun. And Houston is home to the top children’s museum in the country! For more fun things to do in Houston click here!
Los Angeles and San Francisco are great West Coast cities. LA of course is home to Hollywood and Disneyland. Need I say more? But really there’s so much more to LA than stars and theme parks. The city is home to museums, parks, great restaurants, and great shopping. San Francisco is a beautiful city, I love Fisherman’s Wharf and Union Square. A tour to Alcatraz Island includes a visit to the cell house to see where the prisoners once lived. A ride up Lombard Street, the crookedest street in the world, is an experience, you’ll see fine views of the bay, Alcatraz, and Coit Towers from the top.
Here’s a tip for visiting big cities this year. Plan on going during the weekend. Hotels drop their rates on weekends because most business folks head home on Fridays. You’ll find great deals if you book Friday and Saturday nights. This makes big cities a top travel trend for 2017 for those who are looking for a quick get-away.
There are so many great cities in this great country I can’t list them all here. Check out my posts on US cities!
Another Top Travel Trend this year is Europe. With airfares being pretty reasonable many folks are exploring the cities of Europe. As with big cities in the US, European cities tend to empty out during the weekend with many working folks heading into the country to visit parents and grandparents.
If you’re heading to Europe think ancient history, culture, food, and art. Europe has many fine museums and galleries, and a great many statues and monuments too!
Rome, the Eternal City, is my all time favorite. Whether you’re into religious or ancient history you will find it in Rome. This city is home to over 400 churches, many of which house works of arts from the great masters including Leonardo, Michelangelo, Bernini and more. The many galleries and museums have awesome collections as well. As for ancient history, well you’re sure to stumble upon historic ruins as you wander the city, like the Coliseum and the Forum, just to name a couple. As for food, well Rome is a pizza and pasta lover’s home, the wine’s pretty good too! If you’re looking to shop look no further than Via Condotti, the city’s most fashionable street. For things to do in Rome with kids click here!
London, yet another favorite. The British Museum is awesome, best of all it’s free! West End theaters offer many choices from Broadway hits to purely British entertainment like Agatha Christie’s Mousetrap, the longest continuous running play in history. A trip to Harrod’s is an experience, you don’t have to buy anything, that is if you can resist the temptation! London also has many green spaces you can enjoy after trekking thru the historic buildings that include Westminster Abbey and the Parliament. A stroll or cruise along the Thames is a great way to spend a day or evening. There are many restaurants along the river.
Paris always spells romance in my book. This city is home of course to many great eateries and museums. You can spend days wandering the Louvre, I’ve been there 3 times and still haven’t seen everything! Of course a trip to Paris means a trip to the Eiffel Tower. If you just want to see it the best tower views are from the Trocadero; if you want to climb the tower buy your tickets online and schedule your visit. Click here for tickets! Or you can cruise the Seine on one of the boats that ply the river, some of them offer lunch and dinner cruises. For things to do in Paris click here!
There are so many more great cities in Europe, I just listed my top 3 favorites. Check out my posts on these cities and more!
Theme Parks are always popular and surely made the list of Top Travel Trends of the year.
Disneyland and Disney World are probably the two that come to mind. But there are many more theme parks than those two. There’s Universal Studios in LA and Orlando. Lego Land, Hershey Park, and Busch Gardens just to name a few more.
Don’t forget the waterparks, they’re great fun on hot summer days!
For those who want to travel but hate lugging around luggage then book a cruise on one of the many cruise lines. Cruising is definitely a Top Travel Trend for 2017.
From family friendly ships to romance on the high seas, the mega ships that ply the seas offer something for everyone.
The best part of cruising is waking up at a different port almost every day, without dragging that suitcase full of shoes from place to place. At least that’s what my husband says!
Families will love RCCL’s Harmony of the Seas. This ship has a splash zone for smaller kids, water and dry slides for older ones, a rock climbing wall, wave simulator, and zipline for the more adventurous, and an adult pool and spa for those of us who just want to relax in peace. They also have wonderful shows, don’t miss the acrobatic Fine Line show on the Boardwalk, it’s amazing! The ship has many dining venues including the ever popular buffet, a pizza parlor, steak house, and more. I’m sure you’ll find something for everyone!
Couples would probably enjoy the more sedate cruises on Celebrity and Princess cruise lines. They don’t have as many amenities like water slides and ice skating rinks, but their service and food are world class. My favorite ships are the Celebrity Reflection and the Royal Princess.
Where ever you may wander this year have a great time! Don’t forget to share your pictures, we’d love to see them!